How SEO is changing in 2018
Search engine optimization is a progressive field that never stays static for long. With Google being the most visited website in the world, it’s no wonder that businesses want to make sure they show up in their searches. But when you have a tough market and are trying to compete with larger competitors who have years more experience, how do you stand a chance?
By focusing on doing proper SEO for your Olympia business, you can be the capital choice in the capital city amongst everyone in your industry. But proper SEO doesn’t come easily and the results won’t be seen overnight. However, when done the right way, many businesses see an enormous return on investment. And since the internet isn’t going away anytime soon, now’s the best time to let it work to your advantage by considering these SEO factors.
SEO considers on and off-page factors
There are several dozen different things that search bots look for when they consider your page for ranking. Some of these are things you do on individual pages, such as providing quality, credible content that’s related to your target keyword, while other things work in the background such as linking to other credible sources and getting your content shared by multiple users.
Content and design should be primary areas of focus
Your website is very unlikely to be successful without providing users a good reason to stick around. And content and design are the best places to start. Your site should reflect the core values of your business, and these same values should be easy to spot no matter what page a user lands on.
Landing pages help direct users where they want to go
When someone types a query into Google, the words they use in their search is what Google looks for. So if somebody types in “SEO in Olympia”, the search engine will pull up sites that use that keyword appropriately throughout the page. The link from the search results most likely will take you to a landing page, not the homepage. These pages would be focused on SEO in Olympia, even if the company also does website design and other services. They should link to other appropriate pages on the site so users can learn more about those other services too.
Professional Design with SEO in mind
There are several website builders out there that help you fine-tune your own look and feel—but take these for what they are. While website builders are great to get a site up and running in no time, the free versions don’t provide adequate SEO to let you rank in a competitive market. Many of these sites claim that the paid versions do just that, but even with the high monthly fee, they’re no match for a human presence analyzing data and adjusting your site accordingly. If you opt for a professional website design, you can often find companies that will not only make a brilliant looking site, but will help with SEO services to make sure others can find it as well.
Off-page SEO might seem background, but it can’t be ignored
Content and design are crucial and should be the initial focus because not only do they help with SEO, but they help users see the quality in your site and stick around. But that doesn’t mean that off-page SEO can be ignored. Linking, metadata, and site structure all serve an important purpose, even if they do it from the shadows.
Links from credible sites can give rankings a massive boost
When you link to a site, it’s known as an outbound link, because the link goes from your site to another site. These links should be to credible sources (and it’s always a good idea not to link to competitors!) as they help with your credibility.
Inbound links are often outside of your control and are other sites that link to yours. Sites are ranked based on domain authority—a metric that ranks websites based on popularity and credibility—and higher numbers are better. Getting a link from one of these high domain sites such as a major newspaper or government site can be an incredible boon. If you’re able to get one these links, it shows Google that your site is prominent and important.
Metadata tells search engines important information
Your content should be extremely relevant to users that come across your page. Ideally, Google would be able to see your content and judge its quality from that alone, but that kind of technology is far into the future. For now, crawlerscan make some sense of text, but rely on metadata—data about the information on your page—to make sure that they’re accurate.
Metadata can be inputted in several places, such as in videos and images, and also through some HTML tags. It helps to describe to the crawler information that isn’t visible, and also relays the site structure so the bot can decide if it’s appropriate or not. Schema markup further helps describe the site and gives an extra level of detail and is something many sites don’t take the time to do, giving any site that makes use of it a slight advantage.
Your site needs to work on mobile and desktop devices
Now that mobile devices account for the majority of searches, Google is making good on its promise to push its mobile-first initiative by making page load speed on mobile devices a ranking factor in July 2018. New sites should be designed with this in mind, and if you work with a designer, make sure they’ll build your site for mobile as well as desktop.
Avoid SEO companies that guarantee results
Some less reputable businesses claim that they can guarantee the #1 spot on Google, something that is impossible to promise. There are simply too many factors, and if a more established competitor does everything right, it might not be possible to push them from the top spot if you have a brand new website. However, there should be some sort of measurable progress, and a competent SEO company will definitely be able to help make headway with your target keywords over time so that you can compete in the new digital world.